by Santtu “Rebel” Kaskela
Formed in 2005 as a Ville Rautio’s solo project and developed during 2012-2013 to a six-man-band. First demo “Forgotten Soil Of This Land” was released in early 2014 and the first full-length album ”Frostrealm” November 2015. Cold and dark Finnish melancholy. Time to find out a bit more… Let´s go.
So honored to have this chance to have a moment with You Ville. How are You doing ?
This is a pleasure. Actually very fine. Bittersweet work with new material is nearly at final straight and it already sounds awesome. Can’t wait to get it out to the world before its end!
Tell us about Your project, 10 years of hard work… How did You get the idea back in 2005 to start making Your own kind of music and when did You decide the time has come for Suotana to step forth, kick ass and release music for every single “metalhead” to enjoy ?
Back then I was like 15 year old fellow who composed music just for own pleasure. I’ve had already done music for several years before that was first like everything between the sky and the earth that I can’t even say any specific genre to it but slowly it moved forward more power metal and like that. Then 2005 the name Suotana came from somewhere and I started doing more Melodic Black/Death Metal influenced stuff. I’ve always liked the contrast of beautiful melodies and harsh vocals as they support each other so well. A bit later my good friend Pasi Portaankorva liked the stuff and started to play rhythm guitars along and we played together quite often. Like it’s said, during 2012-2013 we finally found right missing members to the band and started working on material that had accrued within the years. My dream and destination was always been to do someday an album with Suotana. Now it’s done and we’re heading towards the next realm!
Coming from the far north it obviously has been a real struggle to get Your opportunity… How would You describe Your journey so far ?
Oh, it have been a frosty ride! Of course it’s hard but I think it’s as hard to every metal band no matter where you are from. I still think that it’s a good thing for a metal band to come from Finland and especially from northern parts of it like us. Although it challenges when talking about gig venue distances and else. The curse of human race called internet is like a saviour to our generation bands because by that the right people can reach us easily and fast no matter where they are on this earth.
How was the reception and what kind of comments did You get from audience and “critics” after releasing Your demo and later Your first full-length album?
We already had a very good comments of our earlier doings and with demo it just got better. ”Forgotten Soil of This Land” was like a test to see if there’s still demand to this kind of stuff. At the latest ”Frostrealm” showed that there truly was. Of course we don’t please everyone but that’s the salt of this business. Always there is comparing to other bands but personally I take it as a compliment if we’re compared the big finnish metal bands like Children of Bodom etc. Both of our releases were published by ourselves and it brought its own difficulties. Today I’d do many things differently but I still see we managed well. Next album will be released through Naturmacht Productions/Rain Without End Records and by that we hope a lot more people can enjoy of this freezing madness!
Tell us a little about Your songwriting process ? Where do You get all the ideas ?
The main theme to the most of my songs is nature, especially northern one and my neverending yearning to there. Past years I’ve been pondering and seeing all of its grievances and how humans are ruining it like a fools. That’s going to be next album’s theme for sure. A journey through reality and beyond. Of course there’s a elements from everything surrounding us but in the end we always return to where we belong. And the most important thing for me has always been not to forget add some ”Lapinlisä” (”lappish extra”) on the top as a frosting and it’s ready! Sometimes I have just the main melody in my head and give it a ”project name” and in the end I have complete song with that same name and lyrics under it. I usually do music before lyrics and the lyrics are the thing that underline the melodies.
During these years… What have been the most memorable, positive, rewarding moments ?
Of course the feel after every single finished song writing process, the very warm welcome of our ‘FSoTL’-demo back then, a release of our debut ‘Frostrealm’ and couple of gigs with Wolfheart here in Finland. I’ve bittersweetly enjoyed every single moment in between also but those came up first in my mind.
Personally I suck in putting bands and music to different “genres”… How would You describe Your band and music Yourself ?
Don’t you worry because I suck at it too so maybe this is a good opportunity to give our listeners to describe: ”Old good wanky power metalish melodeath” and ”Fishing Black Metal!”. These are the best descriptions I’ve ever heard of us!
Year 2016 is very soon signed, sealed and delivered… How was it for You ?
Year was very meaningful and important for us. We had line-up changes during and after ‘Frostrealm’ was released. Quite painlessly we found new guys and it brought lot of new fresh winds to the band. Also we signed with Naturmacht Productions/RWER so this was definately a big year in a band’s history and to its future.
What can we expect in the future ?
So it’s to be told that we’re working on new release that will hopefully and also propably see the light of the day in end of 2017. Material is almost written and all I can say it starts where the album ‘Frostrealm’ and especially the song ‘Embrace’ left us. Or more specifically leaded us.
Any last words (not literally) to people who are reading this, the Family of MHF, Your fans and Your soon to be fans ?
Suotana thanks lot MHF for this and all new and old fans worldwide for being there. All support is priceless. And those who haven’t heard us, a group that drags a wooden boat together in the snowing north and produce sounds along the journey. Go, listen and like – It’s just the beginning.
Thank You so much
Santtu “Rebel” Kaskela / Metalheads Forever Magazine